E4 Technology Initiative
Commonly Asked Questions
1. WHAT DOES E4 STAND FOR?
E4 stands for Embrace, Engage, Empower and Excel.
2. WHAT IS THE E4 INITIATIVE?
E4 is a transition from traditional lecture style instruction to a more collaborative digital approach to learning. The mission is to transform the classroom into a digital learning environment and to equip, challenge, and inspire students as 21st century leaders who impact their world for Christ.
3. HOW WILL E4 BENEFIT MY STUDENT?
Students will be challenged in higher level thinking skills in an engaging hands-on learning environment. Students will receive the instruction needed for the digital age. Students will learn in a collaborative environment with best available tools and methods.
4. ARE ONE-TO-ONE LAPTOP PROGRAMS A NEW APPROACH TO TEACHING?
No, many schools nationwide have been involved in a one-to-one program for over ten years. Henrico County in Virginia started their program in 2001 and Greene County, North Carolina schools initiated a program in 2002. Other school districts have since begun programs.
5. ARE OTHER SCHOOLS IN OUR AREA USING THE ONE TO ONE PROGRAM?
Yes, a number of public schools in nearby counties are using one to one programs (Granville, Lee, and Johnston Counties. Other private schools such as Cary Academy, Trinity Christian, Cathedral, Upper Room Christian and North Raleigh Christian (beginning to investigate) are in various stages of a program.
6. HOW MUCH ADDITIONAL COST WILL FAMILIES HAVE TO PAY?
Parents will be responsible for an annual insurance payment each year. (Approximately $50 per laptop.) Students will also be required to purchase an approved laptop backpack.
8. WILL THE STUDENTS ACTUALLY OWN THEIR LAPTOPS?
No, the computers will be leased from Apple and will be on loan to the students for the school year.
9. HOW WILL STUDENTS GET TECH SUPPORT IF THEY HAVE PROBLEMS WITH THEIR COMPUTERS?
E4 Tech Support will provide support for the initiative in several ways. Each campus will have tech support available on site. Loaners will be available for students to use if their laptops require maintenance. An E4 Help desk will allow students to email questions for when they have problems at home. Apple support will also be available.
10. IN WHAT GRADES WILL THE STUDENTS BE GIVEN LAPTOPS? WILL THE STUDENTS BE ALLOWED TO BRING THE THEM HOME?
Students in 4th grade will use laptops in their classrooms. Each 5th - 12th grade student will be issued a laptop at the beginning of the year for individual use at school and home. The laptop will be returned to GRACE at the end of each school year for refreshing and reformatting. The same laptop will be reissued to the student at the beginning of the next school year.
11. CAN MY STUDENT USE THE FAMILY LAPTOP INSTEAD OF A SCHOOL LAPTOP?
No. For consistency of policies, applications, filters, and classroom instruction all students must use school-issued computers for school work.
12. WHAT LIABILITY WILL PARENTS INCUR WITH THE LAPTOPS?
The lease agreement with Apple covers limited warranties for all MacBooks. The insurance fee will cover normal wear and tear type damages. Parents will be financially responsible for any loss, misuse or abuse of school property.
13. HOW WILL PARENTS BE ASSURED THAT INAPPROPRIATE MATERIALS WILL BE FILTERED FROM STUDENTS?
The school has taken precautions to restrict access to inappropriate materials through a filtering and monitoring system. However, it is impossible on a global internet to control access to all data that a user may discover. It is the user’s responsibility not to initiate access to such material. All MacBooks will be filtered through the GRACE filtering and monitoring system 24/7 whether they are in use on campus or off. Classroom teachers and IT coordinators on each campus will monitor internet use. Administration and the IT coordinators will also be able to view student internet site histories.
Parents are always responsible for monitoring student internet use at home. Suggestions and resources will be discussed at parent orientation.
14. CAN STUDENTS NOW PARTICIPATE IN THE PROGRAM?
A digital transformation has already begun at GRACE to better prepare our students for the digital age. All students are involved in the initiative. Student laptops will be distributed beginning August 2011.
15. WILL THERE BE ANY PARENT TRAINING?
Yes, there will be student and parent orientations at the beginning of the school year. There will also be parent help sessions and parent education opportunities throughout the year.
16. WHAT TRAINING WILL TEACHERS RECEIVE IN PREPARATION FOR THE E4 INITIATIVE?
Teachers will receive continual and ongoing training and professional development to prepare for and implement this initiative. Future teacher in-service days will be set aside for specific technology training for teachers as well as optional summer workshops.
17. Why Macs?
Apple has been involved in education for years and has more curriculum resources and professional development available than competitors
Apple MacBooks are high quality and designed to last
Apple iLife and iWork applications are less expensive than comparable Windows programs and are designed for student creativity
Apple MacBooks require less on-going maintenance and less personnel to support
Apple has a generous lease program just for education
Every Mac comes equipped with dozens of assistive technologies for students with vision, hearing, physical and motor skills difficulties.
18. WILL WE STILL HAVE TRADITIONAL TEXTBOOKS?
We will still use traditional textbooks in our classes as well as digital textbooks and resources that are available for our courses and curriculum. Some publishers only have non-consumable materials, and others are only available in digital form. We are committed to providing the best available curricular resources for all our students.
19. WHEN WILL THE STUDENTS RECEIVE LAPTOPS? Student laptops will be distributed beginning August, 2011.
20. WILL THE E4 PROGRAM CAUSE TUITION RATES TO GO UP? No, the funding for this program has been acquired by redirecting funds from other line item expenditures.